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We are definitely on the right way, says U-17 women's football team coach Dennerby

Bhubaneswar, Oct 18 (IANS) India’s campaign at the FIFA U-17 Women’s World Cup 2022 drew to a close on Monday after a defeat against Brazil.

After the match, India head coach Thomas Dennerby said team didn’t reach all the way that we aimed for but insisted that the team’s performances have been better with each and every game.

“First of all, we came here with the aim to be the first Indian team to take points in a FIFA World Cup and we couldn’t do that. Of course, if you come to see it that way, we didn’t reach all the way that we aimed for with the team. However, I’m still proud of the girls because our performances have been better with each and every game and I think after the match against Brazil, most Indians also should be proud of the team because they were really, really fighting and also showed good combination play in a couple of situations. Definitely, we are on the right way,” Dennerby told AIFF official website.

“I think that in general, we can defend very well. We were defending in an organized way and we were disciplined for most of the time during the 90 minutes. Sometimes, we made some small mistakes and if we do that against top-level teams, they will hurt us and that is a lesson we need to learn. It is not something you can learn in the classroom. You need to learn it on the field — to have your head cool all the time, so you don’t do such small mistakes because of stress or you think that you have less time than you actually have,” he added.

Asked about the reason behind the performances of the team, Dennerby said, “I think it’s very easy to answer this question because, with each and every game they play, they get more experience. They didn’t fear so much. We always show respect but I think that in the first game against the USA, we feared comparatively more and now, we were freer to play and tried to play accordingly.

“In the match, you are outside the frame that you put up together with the coaching staff and so on, but the girls definitely were disciplined.”

“But, we also need to realize the fact that five months isn’t very much to change and learn if you are not used to playing top international games since you are 14-15, as the other girls have done. So if you have the whole picture, as I have, and can compare it with other countries, I’m very proud of the girls,” he said.

–IANS

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